The SUV segment has gained in popularity over the past few years and most manufacturers pay special attention to models in this segment. 2019 will experience some new entrants into the SUV segment which will include new models, current SUVs which get facelifts and others which get new variants. Some of these will be micro SUVs while others will be in the sub 4 meter segment, compact, mid size and full size model, each of which have gained in traction in recent times.
Two new automakers, MG Motors and Kia plans an onslaught in the SUV segment with MG Hector, MG e-ZS and the Kia SP2i based SUV. A minimum of 8 new SUVs are poised for launch in the year ahead and we look at each of these upcoming offerings from Mahindra, Hyundai, Honda, Tata Motors, while two new entries will be from MG Motors and Kia.
Hyundai Venue (Launch 21st May 2019) – Hyundai Venue will be offered in 13 variants, five diesel and eight petrol and across four trim levels – E, S, SX, and SX(O). It will receive a new 1.0 liter turbo petrol engine and a 1.2 liter naturally aspirated petrol engine. Its diesel engine offering will include a 1.4 liter diesel engine offering 90 PS power and 220 Nm torque, with all engines mated to 5 speed and 6 speed manual gearbox. The Venue will be available with Hyundai Blue Link suite of connected car features, a long list of safety features and is expected to be priced between Rs 8 – 12 lakhs.
MG Hector (Launch mid June 2019) – MG Motor’s first offering in the country, Hector has made its debut officially. It features sharp headlamps, a reworked grille and body sculpting. MG Hector will be powered by petrol and diesel engine options that include a 1.5 liter turbo petrol and 2.0 liter diesel engine mated to manual and automatic gearbox options. MG Hector could be priced between Rs.15-20 lakhs and compete with Tata Harrier, Mahindra XUV500, Hyundai Tucson and Jeep Compass.
Kia SP2i SUV (Expected launch July 2019) – Kia is also set to make its debut in India with the SP2i SUV. This first offering from Kia, expected to be named the Tusker, will share its platform with the 2020 Hyundai Creta. Kia Tusker will get a choice of petrol and diesel engine options. These will include a BS VI compliant 1.5 liter petrol and 1.5 liter diesel engines. It will be priced in the Rs 11-16 lakh range.
MG e-ZS electric SUV (Expected launch Q4 2019) – Following launch of MG Hector, the company also plans launch of the e-ZS, an all electric SUV by December 2019. The MG eZS will be one of the first ever fully electric SUVs in India when launched. It will sport Hector’s internet based iSMART technology and a 110kW electric motor that will offer 150 PS and 350 Nm torque with acceleration from 0 to 50 kmph in 3.1 seconds and a range of 350 kms. MG e-ZS will be built in India so as to keep pricing aggressive. MG e-ZS will compete against the upcoming Hyundai Kona Electric SUV and the Nissan Leaf EV.
Mahindra eKUV100 (Launch Q4 2019) – Mahindra eKUV100 will be fitted with the latest connectivity features with smartphone app remote control, making it an internet car. The Mahindra eKUV 100 micro SUV will be powered by a 30kW electric motor. It will have a range of 350 km on a single charge, acceleration from 0 to 100 kmph in 9 seconds and a top speed of 186 kmph. Mahindra eKUV 100 will feature fast charging technology capable of charging batteries up to 80 percent in 30 minutes. On a full charge, it will be able to deliver range of over 150 kms.
Hyundai Kona EV (Expected launch Q3 2019) – The new Kona EV becomes the first electric vehicle from Hyundai to be sold in India. It will be imported as a CKD and will come in with two powertrain options. These will include a 100kW motor offering 139 PS power with a 39kWh battery pack and a 150 kW engine offering 204 PS power with a 62 kWh battery pack. However, in India, the Kona EV could offer less powerful 100 kW motor so as to be more affordably priced.
Honda HRV (Expected launch Q3 2019) – Honda HR-V, slated to come in via the CKD route could be priced at about Rs 18 lakhs. The 5 seater Honda HR-V will measure 4,290mm in length, 1,770mm in width and 1,605mm in height. It will get a 2,610mm long wheelbase and ground clearance of 180 mm. Engine specifications on the Honda HR-V will include a 1.8 liter petrol engine mated to a CVT gearbox and a 1.6 liter diesel engine offering 120 hp power that also powers the Honda CR-V. Poised for a festive launch later this year, the Honda HR-V will take on the Jeep Compass.
Tata Harrier 7 seater (Expected launch Q4 2019) – The Tata Cassini is a 7 seater SUV that will go on to be the company’s flagship SUV when launched by Q4 2019. The SUV was showcased as the Buzzard at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show. It is this name which will be restricted to International markets while in India it could be called the Cassini derived from the Cassini Huyens Satellite, which was developed in collaboration of the European space agency and NASA.
Tata Cassini boasts of the IMPACT 2.0 design philosophy. It gets powered by a 2.0 liter KRYOTEC Turbo diesel engine offering 170 bhp power and 350 Nm torque mated to either a six speed manual or an automatic gearbox with multi drive modes, Terrain Response system and independent suspension setup. Tata Cassini will be priced from around Rs.15-20 lakhs. It will rival the MG Hector 7 seater upon launch.